At RAINE Clothing, we’re passionate about two things: delivering the best possible eco-friendly sustainable fashion options, and demystifying the process of living a more ethically conscious lifestyle, so that you can make informed decisions about your day-to-day choices. That’s why, this week, we’re continuing with our fabric spotlights, and introducing you to a real RAINE staple – recycled polyester!
This incredible fabric is incorporated into a lot of our casual and active wear, and is often blended with cotton for a soft, breathable blend that lends itself to our signature RAINE Clothing comfort and durability.
What is recycled polyester?
If you’ve read our ‘5 Sustainable Fabrics to Buy’ blog post, you’ll know that recycled polyester, sometimes referred to as rPET, is made from pre-existing plastics – most commonly, water or other drinks bottles – that would otherwise have been headed for landfills. These bottles are collected, sterilised, and crushed, and the crushed fragments are then heated and formed into yarn-like strings. These strings are then able to be crimped using special machinery to create fibre which is then blended and dyed like most other forms of fabric. Whilst this process sounds lengthy, it’s estimated that creating rPET actually requires about a third less energy than creating polyester itself!
The resulting recycled polyester fabric is hugely versatile, and can be used for clothing such as our activewear, fleeces, and even t-shirts or dresses!
What makes recycled polyester good for the environment?
Obviously, we all know that single-use plastics, like conventional polyester, are terrible for the environment – it’s estimated that around 60% of the amount of these plastics that are purchased end up either in landfills or the ocean! However, it’s for this exact reason that recycled polyester is such a great eco-friendly fabric option; recycled polyester utilises the single-use plastics that could usually end up in the ocean or a landfill, therefore reducing soil, air, and water pollution.
By far one of the most impressive aspects of this incredible material, however, is that rPET can itself be recycled without any degradation to the fabric – meaning that recycled polyester clothing can be recycled again and again, without losing any of its quality, and at far less of a cost to the environment than creating single use polyester.
Is recycled polyester more expensive?
As we discussed in our post on organic cotton, as eco-friendly, sustainable fashion isn’t as wide-spread as its counterparts in fast fashion, the resources used to make this kind of clothing can cost more than some alternatives – that’s why it’s important that we all try to make more sustainable, long-term choices when it comes to both clothing and our lifestyles as a whole. Put simply; the more demand for sustainable, ethical sources of fabric that are put on the fashion industry, the more likely that producers of these materials will rise to this demand with a more cohesive supply – and all the more likely that the costs of these fabrics will drop, enabling more and more of us to shop in a more ecologically conscious way.
We hope you found this blog post about one of our favourite RAINE Clothing fabrics helpful, and that you’ll consider incorporating more of this incredible eco-friendly material into your sustainable fashion wardrobe.
If you’d like to learn more about which other fabrics are a good choice for sustainability, we’ve shared our top 5 here; and don’t forget to catch up on our organic cotton and hemp spotlights if you’d like to learn more about the fabrics we’re currently using at RAINE Clothing!
Have you started incorporating any recycled fabrics into your wardrobe, yet? Let us know in the comments, below!